In March 2013, five years ago this month, something big happened to PeopleSoft. The Continuous Innovation release (9.2) was launched - and PeopleSoft hasn’t been the same since.
At that time, the biggest challenge PeopleSoft customers, like nearly all enterprise software customers, faced was the major release/upgrade model. In that model, customers had to wait multiple years for their software vendors to deliver massive amounts of changes in the form of a new release. Couple that with vendors delivering regular maintenance in the form of periodic and non-cumulative bundles that had to be consumed serially. The result was a world where customers were forced to choose between reducing costs by doing little or nothing to their enterprise software – which gave them no value and put them at risk of being non-compliant or spending considerable time and money to perform disruptive maintenance and upgrades in order to adopt and receive value from vendor delivered changes. Even though PeopleSoft applications had delivered Feature Packs on the 9.1 release with incremental new features, around 2010 Oracle’s PeopleSoft team recognized that this model no longer worked and set out to address these challenges. After some considerable effort building out new tools and revamping both internal and external processes, the Continuous Innovation release was born.
With that, Oracle moved to a model of continuously delivering new PeopleSoft features and maintenance on the current PeopleSoft solution – the Continuous Innovation release (i.e., the PeopleSoft release 9.2 code line). With Continuous Innovation, all new PeopleSoft functionality and maintenance are delivered as updates (i.e., “PeopleSoft Update Images”) multiple times throughout the year. For PeopleSoft HCM and ERP (Financials, Procurement, Projects, and Asset Lifecycle Management) applications, updates are delivered four times a year.
More important than how Oracle is continuously delivering new PeopleSoft functionality and maintenance is how customers can consume it. Disruptive and costly major upgrades from one release to another are no longer required to gain access to new PeopleSoft features and enhancements. Customers are able to consume only the changes they desire using Selective Adoption and the PeopleSoft Update Manager (PUM). These are the new processes and tools used by customers to adopt the continuous innovations and maintenance Oracle is delivering in PeopleSoft. Customers can define and execute their own unique Selective Adoption strategy as they see fit. Customers define what changes they adopt and when and how often they adopt them based on their needs and bandwidth. As Paco Aubrejuan, Oracle’s Senior Vice President for PeopleSoft, has stated numerous times, “this is a game changer!”
PeopleSoft Selective Adoption enabled by the PeopleSoft Update Manager
A game changer it has been. Since Oracle introduced Continuous Innovation release, five years ago in March 2013, Oracle has delivered numerous updates to PeopleSoft. As of March 2018 Oracle has delivered:
- 1150+ new application features
- 63 unique PeopleSoft Update Images
- 3 PeopleTools releases
New innovations that historically would have waited years for the next major PeopleSoft release are being delivered in a matter of months to customers in a more digestible way. One could successfully argue (in my opinion) that more than a major release worth of new features has already been delivered over the last five years. See for yourself. The Cumulative Feature Overview Tool is an easy way to see what new PeopleSoft features were delivered in which PeopleSoft Update Image and for which specific module. You can even see which new features have video overviews on the PeopleSoft YouTube channel. Consider some of the most significant new PeopleSoft features, all produced via Continuous Innovation and available through Selective Adoption:
- A modern, mobile user experience powered by PeopleSoft Fluid UI
- Actionable, embedded analytics leveraging Simplified Analytics and Pivot Grids
- Guided processes using Activity Guides
- Additional WorkCenters
- Deployment of PeopleSoft to the Oracle Cloud (IaaS) with PeopleSoft Cloud Manager
Additionally, that major release worth of new features has been consumed at a lower cost and with a more rapid time-to-value under Selective Adoption compared to the historic release/upgrade model.
New features delivered over the last five years via Continuous Innovation
How is this impacting customers? Let the customer’s own experiences answer that. Customer testimonials from PeopleSoft Innovators and Quest success stories illustrate how Oracle’s commitment to ongoing investment in PeopleSoft through Continuous Innovation is positively impacting their organizations. Whether its Deakin University and Clackamas County rapidly deploying new capabilities like recruiting or Sandia National Laboratories and Children’s Hospital Colorado simplifying how users navigate the system, none of these successes would have been possible without the advent of the Continuous Innovation release five years ago.